Skip to main content

Full text of "Navy & Marine Corps Medical News 00-19"

See other formats

           The United States Navy on the World Wide Web
   A service of the Navy Office of Information, Washington DC  
      send feedback/questions to  
  The United States Navy web site is found on the Internet at  

Navy & Marine Corps Medical News (MN-00-19) - May 12, 2000 

	The Navy Bureau of medicine and Surgery distributes Navy 
and Marine Corps Medical News (MEDNEWS) to Sailors and 
Marines, their families, civilian employees and retired 
Navy and Marine Corps families.  
	MEDNEWS is a weekly compendium of news and information 
contributed by commands throughout the Navy Medical 
department.  Information contained in MEDNEWS stories is 
not necessarily endorsed by BUMED, nor should it be 
considered official Navy policy.
	To achieve maximum medical information distribution, 
your command is highly encouraged to distribute MEDNEWS to 
ALL HANDS electronically, include MEDNEWS in command 
newspapers, newsletters and radio and TV news programs.
	Stories in MEDNEWS use these abbreviations after a Navy 
medical professional’s name to show affiliation: MC - 
Medical Corps (physician); DC - Dental Corps; NC - Nurse 
Corps; MSC - Medical Service Corps (clinicians, researchers 
and administrative managers).  Hospital Corpsmen (HM) and 
Dental Technician (DT) designators are placed in front of 
their names.
Contents for this week’s MEDNEWS:
Headline: Hospital building dedicated to Medal of Honor 
Headline: Medical experts learn about weapons of mass 
Headline: Yokosuka offers development program for infants, 
Headline: Former fighter pilot now flies through medical 
Headline: Bethesda chaplain receives national honor 
Headline: Teleconference improves training for future 
hospital corpsmen
Headline: Anthrax question and answer
Headline: TRICARE question and answer
Headline: Healthwatch: Guard against rabies infection
Headline: Hospital building dedicated to Medal of Honor 
By Dan Barber, Naval Hospital Twentynine Palms

	TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. -- Naval Hospital Twentynine 
Palms’ main building was dedicated to Robert E. Bush in 
ceremonies May 2 to honor the World War ll Medal of Honor 
	The former Master Chief Hospital Corpsman was the 
honored guest as the Chief of Naval Operations and the 
Surgeon General of the Navy, among others, praised the 
hospital corpsman’s heroism.  
	Fifty-five years ago, as an 18-year-old Hospital 
Apprentice First Class, Bush was on patrol with a Marine 
rifle company on Okinawa.  His award citation described his 
actions that day: 
	Fearlessly braving the fury of artillery, mortar, and 
machine gun fire from strongly entrenched hostile 
positions, Bush constantly and unhesitatingly moved from 
one casualty to another to attend the wounded falling under 
the enemy’s murderous barrages.  
	As the attack passed over a ridge top, Bush was 
advancing to administer blood plasma to a Marine lying 
wounded on the skyline when the Japanese launched a savage 
counterattack.  In this perilously exposed position, Bush 
resolutely maintained the flow of life-giving plasma.  With 
the bottle held high in one hand, Bush drew his pistol with 
the other and fired into the enemy’s ranks until his 
ammunition was expended.  
	Quickly seizing a discarded carbine, he trained his fire 
on the Japanese charging pointblank over the hill, 
accounting for six of the enemy despite his own serious 
wounds and the loss of an eye suffered during his desperate 
battle in defense of the helpless man.  
	With the hostile force finally routed, he calmly 
disregarded his own critical condition to complete his 
mission, valiantly refusing medical treatment for himself 
until his patient had been evacuated, and collapsing only 
after attempting to walk to the battle aid station
	For that unselfish service, President Harry S. Truman 
awarded Bush the Medal of Honor.  
	At the hospital ceremony a bronze statue, depicting Bush 
holding the plasma bottle for the wounded Marine on the 
ground in front of him in one hand and firing his pistol 
with the other hand, was unveiled in front of the hospital.  
The statue is a full-size replica of a wooden version in 
Bush’s hometown of South Bend, Wash.  
	“This ceremony gives us the opportunity to remember the 
service that the World War II generation gave,” said Chief 
of Naval Operations, Adm. Jay Johnson.  “It is a chance to 
recall the tremendous sacrifice and service that millions 
of Americans gave, like Bob Bush… the men and women who 
really won for us the world we have today.  After they did 
that they came home and built the country that we have 
today.  Some times… too many times, in my humble opinion, 
all of us have a tendency to take what we have for granted.  
They, the generation who fought and died for us, never 
	As Bush described events of that day on Okinawa, he said 
he wasn’t doing anything more than his fellow hospital 
corpsmen were doing there.
	“Believe me, when the Japanese were shooting at you, 
there were two choices.  You either run or you shoot back.  
The training I received in firearms really saved me and 
saved my patient.”
	Bush said there was another reason that emphasized not 
forgetting the actions of Marines and Sailors that day. 
	“Those of us who lived have to represent those who 
didn’t,” said Bush.
Headline: Medical experts learn about weapons of mass 
By Bill Doughty, U. S. Naval Hospital Yokosuka

	YOKOSUKA, Japan, -- Among the greatest fears of mankind 
are fears of the unknown…the unseen…the unthinkable.  
Experts in medical readiness came to Yokosuka recently to 
help medical teams think about the unthinkable.
	Some weapons of the 21st century are known as Chemical, 
Biological, Radiological, and Environmental, or CBRE 
weapons.  Examples include sarin gas and anthrax, which are 
often unseen and hard to detect but potentially fatal.  
It's an issue of particular concern to those who serve in 
Japan where terrorists launched a sarin attack on the Tokyo 
subway system several years ago.
	"One of our purposes here is to help people avoid the 
generalized panic reaction that they hear when we talk 
about weapons of mass destruction or CBRE.  We're trying to 
elevate the level of knowledge, the level of awareness," 
said Cmdr. Warren Jederberg, MSC, of Navy Environmental 
Preventive Medicine Unit 6 (NEPMU-6) at Pearl Harbor, 
	Instructors from NEPMU-6 gave a 3-day class for medical 
providers and two 1-day awareness classes for hospital 
corpsmen, fleet medical personnel, medical service corps 
officers and others who wanted to learn more about weapons 
of mass destruction.
	Attendees learned about the effects of these weapons, 
methods of dispersion, and prevention.  They were advised 
to network with each other to improve preparedness, to plan 
ahead for "the unthinkable." 
	According to NEPMU-6's Lt. Mike Kubler, MSC, "Being able 
to deal with the situation is all in preparedness.  Be 
aware of what the problems and threats are and what you can 
do to take care of them ahead of time such as planning and 
	It's been said that knowledge is power and Kubler said 
that knowledge about CBRE training is at everyone's 
	"Increase your own awareness to the best of your 
ability," he said.  There’s good information on the Federal 
Emergency Management Agency’s and other government agency 
web sites.  I want to emphasize that people shouldn't 
panic.  That's the biggest issue.  As we educate folks, a 
more rational approach can be developed."
Headline: Yokosuka offers development program for infants, 
By Jodi Johnson, US Naval Hospital Yokosuka

	YOKOSUKA, Japan -- What do you do if your toddler isn’t 
talking?  What if you have concerns about the way your baby 
is or is not moving?  What if you think your child can’t 
hear or see well? 
	The Early Intervention Program at U.S. Naval Hospital 
Yokosuka may be able to help you.  Early intervention 
services (EIS) are designed for children age birth to three 
years of age who have, or who are at risk for, 
developmental problems. 
	Parents who have concerns about their child’s hearing, 
vision, speech, motor or play skills should tell their 
pediatrician.  Although EIS accepts parent referrals, the 
child’s doctor may be able to rule out problems, send the 
child to a specialist, or also refer him to EIS.  
	The EIS team will conduct a full evaluation of the child 
and make recommendations for services.  Children who 
qualify for the program may receive services from an 
occupational or physical therapist, speech-language 
pathologist, social worker, community health nurse or 
developmental pediatrician.  What services a child receives 
depends on the needs of the child and the family.  
	EIS is a family-centered program.  Parents have the 
right to make decisions about their child’s treatment, and 
parents are actively involved in all steps of the 
evaluation and treatment.  The goal of the Early 
Intervention Program is to help parents learn to help their 
child and to optimize the child’s development.  For further 
information contact your primary care manager.
	Jodi Johnson is a speech-language pathologist at USNH 
Headline: Former flight officer now flies through medical 
By JO1 Maria Christina Mercado, Naval Hospital Pensacola

	PENSACOLA, Fla. -- Lt. David L. Kay was a successful 
naval flight officer whose past assignments included 
instructor duty in Pensacola and two tours aboard USS 
America (CV 66) where he flew 38 missions in an F-14 
‘Tomcat’ during Operation Desert Storm.
	His aviation career was flying high when he decided 
medical service was what he wanted.  He applied for 
admission to the military’s only medical school, the 
Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences (USUHS) in 
Bethesda, Md.  Upon acceptance, the Hatboro, Pa., native 
was congratulated -- and demoted to ensign.
	"I knew when I first started looking at USUHS or the 
Health Services Profession Scholarship that both programs 
require you to be an ensign.  I knew that going in, and I 
thought I had gone through in my mind what that meant.  
But, it was not until I put on those ensign bars again that 
it really hit me," said Kay, who is currently attending 
	The third-year medical student recently returned to 
Pensacola for a six-week rotation at the Naval Hospital's 
Family Practice Clinic under a shared teaching agreement 
between USUHS and the Navy Medical Department.
	Kay was originally commissioned through Aviation Officer 
Candidate School in January 1988.  After earning his wings 
in April 1989, he was assigned to Naval Air Station Oceana, 
Va., where he completed two cruises aboard America as part 
of Carrier Air Wing One.
	Kay began to think about studying medicine during his 
first fleet tour.  
	"My flight surgeon got me interested in medicine.  He 
got to fly and to practice medicine, which seemed like an 
interesting mix," said Kay.  "It became really interesting 
to me when I came here for my second tour in Pensacola.  I 
was assigned to VT-86.  My flight surgeon became an 
astronaut and that looked appealing to me," he said.
	Kay, who was a liberal arts major and graduated college 
with a degree in classical performance, had the wrong 
educational background for medicine.  He had to go to night 
school to complete all the undergraduate prerequisites for 
medical school.  He did that at Pensacola Junior College 
while assigned as an instructor at VT-86 at NAS Pensacola 
from 1993-96.
	“Most of the instructors at VT-86 were all students when 
I was there as an instructor.  It is kind of ironic that 
they run into me and see me as an ensign now and they're 
all Lieutenants," said the Gulf War veteran.
	He added that when he wears his uniform, which includes 
gold aviator wings, people look at him and appear puzzled.
	"It doesn't make sense to them," said Kay, whose 
personal awards do not include the Navy's Good Conduct 
medal -- a sure sign of being a prior enlisted man. "It is 
a great icebreaker with patients, 'What have you done?’ is 
the question they always ask," said Kay.
	The medical student enjoys sharing his story with 
patients, but says from his perspective it's not that 
	Kay said his choice was not as unusual as some may 
think.  In his USUHS class he has former aviators, SEALS, 
surface warfare officers, submariners and some Medical 
Service Corps officers.
	He admits becoming an ensign again is not as much of a 
loss as other officers might imagine.
	"It was challenging to take a step backward," he said.  
"I had to keep in mind that I'm going to get something very 
useful out of this.  The training will give me some useful 
skills for life," said Kay.
	For more information about becoming a Navy medical 
professional, visit the Navy web site at or see your 
Navy recruiter. 
Headline: Bethesda chaplain receives national honor
By JO1 (SW) F.R. Keeley, National Naval Medical Center

	BETHESDA, Md. -- Lt.Cmdr. Jennifer Geddes, CHC, of 
National Naval Medical Center, Bethesda, Md., was 
recognized for her consistent excellence in ministry and 
awarded the Distinguished Service Award by the Military 
Chaplains Association in Norfolk, Va., May 2.
	Geddes was selected from among nominees from the Army, 
Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard.  Retired Navy Chief of 
Chaplains, Rear Adm. David White, CHC, made the 
	Bureau of Medicine and Surgery chaplain, Capt. John 
FitzGerald, CHC, said Geddes’ strong and creative ministry 
brings honor to all who serve with her at NNMC, in BUMED 
and throughout the Navy Chaplain Corps.
	Geddes was nominated for her award by the NNMC Director 
of Pastoral Care Services, Capt. R.L. Bebee, CHC, who 
summarized Geddes many achievements saying, “She has 
continuously demonstrated quality conscientious leadership, 
astute professionalism, unquestioned moral integrity, 
congenial humanity and dedicated pride in the uniform and 
the United States Navy.”
	Chaplains’ services at NNMC are divided among several 
chaplains.  Geddes focuses her caring attention on the 
staff, patients and families of the Mother and Infant Care 
Unit and hematology and oncology. 
	Geddes downplays her position at NNMC, saying, “Of 
course there are religious services and ceremonies to do, 
but like everyone here at NNMC, we are focused on patient 
care.  Only for us, our patients include the hospital staff 
and families of patients as well.
	“Much of my time is spent in counseling, either formally 
or just talking quietly in the rooms or hallways.  Staff 
members or social workers are very good at letting me know 
about patients or families who are in crisis.  Staff 
members too, sometimes need to talk about problems they are 
facing, or just talk away the stress when they can’t help 
in some situations.”
Headline: Teleconference improves training for future 
hospital corpsmen
From Naval Hospital Corps School, Great Lakes

	GREAT LAKES, ILL. -- Video teleconferencing is bringing 
the reality of life at sea practicing damage control, water 
rationing and team work to hospital corpsmen in training at 
Hospital Corps School in Great Lakes, Ill.  
	A recent video teleconference occurred between USS 
George Washington (CVN 73) and the school.  The event 
emphasized the importance of teleconferencing technology 
for world-wide teaching and evaluation opportunities.  More 
importantly for the future hospital corpsmen, it gave them 
a head start on assuming their duties when reporting aboard 
	Discussions concerning water rationing, damage control 
situations and daily shipboard duties intrigued the 30 
hospital corpsman “A” school students participating in the 
teleconference.  The presentation generated questions from 
the students about common sick call ailments, on board 
surgeries, additional training, watchstanding and Morale, 
Welfare and Recreation facilities.  
	The teleconference also provided examples of treating 
patients, fighting a fire, controlling flooding and shoring 
a bulkhead.  It became apparent to the student hospital 
corpsmen that the men and women of the George Washington 
worked as a team.  
	Hospital Corpsman Allan Cook, a recent Hospital Corps 
School graduate, said the pre-deployment training increased 
his skills and enabled him to function more independently.  
	“Because of [Hospital] Corps School orientation 
training, I felt more than ready to embrace the challenge 
of medicine at sea,” said Cook.  
	This video teleconference demonstrated that Navy 
hospital corpsman training is changing.  With virtual 
reality in the classrooms and real-time communication with 
the fleet, new hospital corpsmen can now better experience 
what awaits them when they join the Fleet.
Headline: Anthrax question and answer
From Bureau of Medicine and Surgery

	Question: Who is the executive agent for the biological 
immunization effort?
	Answer: DoD Directive 6205.3, Immunization Program for 
Biological Warfare Defense, designates the Secretary of the 
Army as the executive agent for the DoD immunization 
program for biological warfare defense.
	For more information visit the Navy medical anthrax 
website at 
or the DOD anthrax website at
Headline: TRICARE question and answer
From Bureau of Medicine and Surgery
	Question: Is there a difference between the terms "cost 
shares" and "copayments"?  
	Answer: Out of pocket costs for TRICARE Prime enrollees 
are referred to as "copayments."  For those who remain in 
TRICARE Standard or use the TRICARE Extra program, out of 
pocket costs include deductibles and "cost shares".  The 
term "cost shares" refers to the percentage of the medical 
bill that the beneficiary must pay after the annual 
deductible is met.  
	For more information, visit the TRICARE website at
Headline: Healthwatch: Guard against rabies infection
From Bureau of Medicine and Surgery

	WASHINGTON -- Rabies is one of the most feared animal 
diseases that can be contracted by man.  It is spread to 
humans by dogs, cats, raccoons, bats, bobcats, horses, 
skunks and cows.  Rabbits, squirrels, chipmunks, hamsters, 
rats and mice are rarely infected and their bites rarely, 
if ever, require treatment for rabies. 
	Rabies is caused by a virus germ entering a wound from a 
bite or a scratch of an infected animal.  The virus attacks 
the nervous system, causing paralysis, delirium and 
convulsions.  Without medical intervention, the usual 
duration of symptoms will last two to six days, then will 
usually be followed by death because of respiratory 
	Worldwide, there are an estimated 30,000 deaths from 
rabies every year, nearly all in developing countries.  
	How do you avoid rabies?  Make sure all your pets' 
vaccinations are up to date.  Try to avoid confrontations 
with wild animals.  If you are bitten or scratched by an 
animal, even if it is your own pet or you know the animal, 
wash the bite or scratch thoroughly and seek medical 
attention.  There are medical treatments against rabies, 
but once it sets in, it is almost always fatal. 
Comments about and ideas for MEDNEWS are welcome.  Story 
submissions are encouraged.  Contact MEDNEWS editor, Earl 
W. Hicks, at email:; Telephone 
202/762-3223, (DSN) 762-3223, or fax 202/762-3224.